Jason Pettigrove takes a look at the rivalry between Man City and Liverpool which has seen them dominate the Premier League in recent seasons.
Anyone who had the pleasure of watching Manchester City (2/5) and Liverpool (7/4) going toe to toe in the Premier League fixture that many billed as the title decider would not have been disappointed.
As it turned out it decided nothing, however, the 90 minutes did show the rest of the English top-flight and those elite teams in Europe’s top five leagues that the two best and most expansive sides on the continent at the moment both come from the northwest of ol’ Blighty.
This is a rivalry that’s been years in the making, and it isn’t unfair to compare it to the Manchester United v Arsenal epics from the early part of the millennium.
The recent games perhaps don’t have the blood and thunder of those from yesteryear but there’s no doubt whatsoever that Messrs. Klopp and Guardiola have got their teams playing at such a consistently high level that it’s perfectly acceptable to suggest that, in many ways, it’s a rivalry that surpasses the former.
The skill level, both collectively and individually, is off the charts and there are still enough players willing to mix it when the need arises.
The ability to completely dominate the opposition week in and week out, in virtually every facet, is a testament to the work that both managers have put in over the last few years to get them to the levels we are seeing presently.
Consider just how hard the big names work for their bosses in comparison to the likes of United, by way of example. Like chalk and cheese.
Wednesday night saw both navigate their Champions League quarter-finals, as expected.
“It’s not a historic rivalry, but Liverpool vs Manchester City is the best quality rivalry we’ve seen!”@ThePaulMachin believes we’ve never seen a rivalry as good as Liverpool vs Man City.
Will this fixture become the greatest rivalry in years to come? pic.twitter.com/Zyl1KNN2Xr
— BetVictor (@BetVictor) April 14, 2022
The 0-0 and 3-3 draws respectively were enough to see City through to an epic semi against a resurgent Real Madrid, and Liverpool needing to topple surprise package, Villarreal, to claim their place in the showpiece.
At this stage, only a fool would bet against both English sides lining up for European football’s top prize in Seville, with the greatest of respect to La Liga’s representatives.
Well before then, of course, there’s the Easter extravaganza in the FA Cup.
It gives fans of football the opportunity to sit back, relax and enjoy the incredible entertainment City and Liverpool will provide once more.
When football is played like this, you just can’t get enough. The only shame is that the experience will be another fleeting one.
The ‘can we play you every week’ refrain is one we should all be singing…